Government raises speed limits on expressways to 120 kmph

Tuhin Guha Published: April 16, 2018, 03:48 PM IST

The Ministry of Road Transport and Highways has revised speed limits for various categories of roads in the country. In an amendment to the Motor Vehicles Act, cars can now be driven on expressways at 120 kmph and on highways at 100 kmph. Commercial people carriers (taxis, buses, tempos, etc) can be driven at 100 kmph on expressways and 90 kmph on highways while goods carriers and motorcycles (where allowed) can now touch 80 kmph legally on expressways and highways.

Within city limits, cars can now travel at 70 kmph while commercials vehicles and motorcycles now have a limit of 60 kmph. Quadricycles and 3-wheelers can travel no faster than 50 kmph in the city. Road users are given a 5% buffer in maintaining these limits.

Picture for representation only

However, high-risk expressway and highway sections with predefined limits unchanged. So effectively, expressways and highways now have a 20 kmph higher limit while commercial people carriers can now travel 20 kmph quicker on expressways and 10 kmph quicker on highways. These new speed limits are not applicable to stretches passing through villages and towns where the state governments have enforced their own limits.

While these speed limits update India's archaic road safety laws for newer, more competent vehicles, the reality is that India's road safety record is far from ideal. The country needs far better enforcing of laws, better road infrastructure and a higher standard of driver skill for it to remedy this situation and get anywhere near the levels of safety that roads in developed countries offer.